If you’re looking for inspiration to create the perfect nursery for your little one, you’re in the right place. We’ve gathered insights from real moms that have gone through the nursery design process to provide you with ideas and advice that will help you create a space that is both functional and beautiful!
In this Nursery Inspo series, we’ll be sharing interviews with nursery designers, parents, and other experts who can offer valuable insights into creating a space that meets the needs of both parents and babies. Whether you’re looking for tips on selecting the perfect color scheme, advice on how to maximize storage in a small space, or ideas for incorporating personal touches into your nursery design, we’ve got you covered.
First up, we are going to hear from Rachel Melvin, a lifestyle and style blogger in North Atlanta, As a social media agency agency owner and content creator, she keeps busy by shopping and selling vintage home goods and thrifting pieces, which is a part of the reason why her nursery is so unique and inspirational!
Hello Rachel! Before we get into your nursery, we’d love to hear about your personal aesthetic and style!
My personal aesthetic for my home is a mix of vintage, cottage, and bohemian. But mostly vintage cottages! I like to use a lot of contrasting neutrals, like dark gray-blues, blacks, browns, and terra cotta colors. Most of our home decor comes from estate sales or antique stores and I love a good thrifted find that I can up-cycle! It’s important to have things around me that are different and unique, that also tell a story or are super personal to us!
Now onto the main event, you’re expecting your first child! How exciting! How have you been preparing for your little one?
We’re so excited! After a season of losses, we’re feeling so grateful. To prepare, we’ve been doing all the research we can on bringing a little one into the world. I’ve also made it a point to accept slowing down and living a more calm and relaxing life—at least for these 9 months!
After we told our friends and family, we got straight to work on the nursery. It’s definitely been the most fun project and the one thing I was most excited about doing during my pregnancy! It took me a while to collect the perfect little touches, and I loved the hunt.
When it came to designing your nursery, what were your goals for the space? What were some of your must-have features? Where did you pull inspiration for your nursery?
My goal for the space was to create a calm, warm, inviting space that would make everyone (including baby!) feel comfortable and relaxed when they walk in. I also wanted to make sure that the room was able to grow with our little one, so we chose to decorate it a bit more mature with real furniture that could be used for years to come. Other than the crib, we chose not to invest in baby-specific furniture for the room (like a changing table) and wanted to select pieces that we’d use throughout our home.
My must-have features were comfy textiles (I’m all about soft!), unique artwork that means something to us, vintage accents and decor, and a vintage piece of furniture. I refinished the dresser but didn’t have a specific place for it for about 2 years, so this worked out perfectly!
My inspiration for the nursery was English Cottage/Secret Garden. I’m a huge vintage shopper, and go to estate sales almost every week. Honestly, I had started collecting items for this room in this design style as far back as 4 years ago! I got a lot of inspiration from Pinterest for specific vignettes, but I also wanted to do things a little differently than most nurseries.
If you’re interested in checking out more of Rachel’s nursery journey and her new baby coming, follow along on her Instagram!
What part of the design process did you enjoy the most?
Sourcing items! Like I said, I wanted to do things a little differently, so I didn’t want to shop at all the same stores as everyone else. I searched high and low for each of the items we put in the room and carefully selected each one to make sure it had a story that fit our family.
It took about 4 months total to get to this final product. Cribs were in and out of stock, I couldn’t find the right artwork, we went back and forth on the wallpaper decision, we originally had a completely different shelf in the record player corner… but everything worked out perfectly.
We’ve loved seeing how you’ve incorporated our pieces so seamlessly into your home. What stood out to you from Crane Baby?
I initially discovered Crane Baby because I was looking for a unique crib skirt. The tassels are just the right amount of bohemian, vintage, but unique style. I didn’t want the plain, traditional look. Then I saw all of the cute (unique, again!) patterns on the burp cloths, blankets, and play mats.
I loved that Crane Baby offered more unique patterns that are great alternatives to baby animals and traditional pinks and blues. Everything is more in my neutral, but colorful color palette I wanted for this room.
What is your favorite part or detail in your nursery?
My favorite part of the nursery is the dresser-rocking chair corner. I know we’re going to spend so much time in this corner and I wanted it to be a special place! The dresser is one of my favorite furniture pieces in my whole house. I bought it at an estate sale, and I scrubbed and sanded it until it was the perfect wood color, and had it saved for just the right spot for about a year before we started on the nursery!
Do you have any tips or advice for parents-to-be who are getting started on putting together their nursery?
Make a moodboard! Collect inspiration from Pinterest or Instagram, start with a color palette, and get furniture before you get decor. The last things we added to the room were blankets, toys, and knick-knacks. The first thing was the crib!
Check thrift stores, Facebook Marketplace, and with friends and family for the bigger ticket items like furniture and a glider. We were gifted the glider from my parents when they were moving which really helped our budget. I also did a bit of shopping online to get good deals with coupon codes.
Finally, try not to overbuy! We used about 85% of the things I had purchased for the nursery. Luckily, most of the items I bought were thrifted so it didn’t cost much not to use them, or we put them somewhere else in the house.